Monday, February 08, 2010

The Long Australian Summer

It is summer down in Australia folks, I don't know if you know that, and I think that the excessive heat must be getting to the Aussies because, well, they have been getting a little crazy lately. Three things, let's take a look.
First there was, or is as it were, the incident at the Olympic Village in Vancouver. The Winter Olympics haven't even started and the IOC had hauled the Australians in to have a little talk. Seems their athletes have hung a gigantic picture of a boxing kangaroo from a balcony. The problem is not that they hung it there - it only covered the balconies of Australian athletes - the problem is that the boxing kangaroo is apparently a registered trademark, and that is a no no when it comes to the Olympics. The image first flew from an Australian yacht that won the America's Cup in 1983, and has since come to be used to promote literacy or something in Australia. But someone copyrighted it, and so it was a problem. Basically what the IOC did was tell them it could stay but that the next time they needed to call ahead and ask permission first. Like the guy next door who gets all pissed off when you go in his yard to get your Frisbee from your super intense game of ultimate Frisbee not because you went in his yard but because you didn't ask first. Man. See what happens when the world and Canada and Australia get together?
Well, it didn't end there for the Aussies. Pretty soon they were in trouble with the RSPCA, and I don't know who that is. I know who the ASPCA is because I have been in trouble with them before, but I am not sure who the RSPCA is. I am sure that if I were to look them up on the Interweb I would find out that they are the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Here's what happened: Someone on the Australian version of "I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here" killed a rat after they had been put on red beans and rice rations. Later, another contestant ate the dead rat. That, apparently, was not cool, and the RSPCA fined the ITV network some money for the incident. The network apologized, as networks do, and paid the fine, and they moved on. I guess the thing that really sort of threw me here is that the article from which I learned about this incident made it clear that the neither the Australian government nor the government of New South Wales did the fining, it was the RSPCA themselves. This possibly governmental body just levied fines because ti saw a rat get killed on TV. It would have been fine had the red beans and rice not been around, but apparently in Australia you can't kill a rat and eat it just because. The animal lovers will fine you. No word yet on whether or not my plant group will be able to fine them when they brutally murder and devour their next harmless eggplant.
This, of course, is all too much for most of us to take. I sort of want to poke my eyes out. Or stab my throat to bits, which is what Chayne Hultgren apparently tried to do. He recently set a world record by swallowing swords each measuring in at 28.35 inches long. That's 72 cm if you live, well, anywhere but America. And so at 18 of them that is 510.3 inches, or 42 and a half feet. How neat is that? He has been training since he was 16, which is 15 years because he is 31, in order to set his record, which breaks the record which he set. So take that you Australian bastard. Oh wait. Anyway, he trains by putting non-sword things down his throat but he doesn't seem to think it is a good idea for other people to have. Surprise, surprise. I am pretty sure that he just doesn't want to lose his record, don't you agree?
So that is what has been happening in the Australian heat, as the summer continues to boil the Southern Continent. Does anyone call it that? I don't know. Anyway, it's all good as we here in America roll towards spring and the boys and girls down under careen towards fall. Then it's our turn.


BradPerala said...

When Sidney hosted the Summer Olympics, it was actually winter there. The Olympics are northern hemisphere biased.

Big Dave said...

That is a fantastic point. I thought of that at one point but I had already posted everything. But yes, very astute.